NEWS

Disfigured Woman Decries Prejudice

12/31/2011 03:34 EST | Updated 03/01/2012 05:12 EST

A woman disfigured by a pit bull said a local restaurant is mistreating her because of her looks.

Chantal Guindon, the restaurant owner, admits that she has asked Marie-Helene Tokar to cover her nose more than once.

Tokar was attacked by a neighbour's pitbull in 2008.

Since then, she said she has had many tough moments and painful surgeries.

On Christmas Eve, the owner of a local restaurant said she could not attend a party there.

"She asked me to cover my face and I said, 'that's okay' and after she called me back and said, 'no, it's not a good idea,'" said Tokar.

Guindon said she has asked Tokar to cover her nose several times and Tokar has not complied

She said Tokar always sits by the door, so people see her as soon as they come in.

But Guindon said she uninvited Tokar to the Christmas party because of her behaviour, not her appearance.

Guindon said Tokar scares children in the restaurant by approaching them and disrupts customers by spitting, coughing and frequently fighting with her son.

Tokar admits she has argued with her son there.

Montreal lawyer Julius Grey said restaurant owners do have legal rights to keep certain customers out of their establishments.

"It's obvious that if a person cannot be there, the person screams and yells, somebody mentally handicapped unable to control themselves, there will be a point at which the owner will have a right but I don't think this is it," said Grey.

Tokar said she will not return to the restaurant.